Impact of forecasting methods on variance ratio in order-up-to level policy
Dong Myung Lee
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This paper considers the impact of forecasting methods on the bullwhip effect for a simple replenishment system in which a first-order autoregressive process describes the customer demand and an order-up-to inventory policy characterizes the replenishment decision. The impact of exponential smoothing and minimum mean squared error forecasting is measured for both the bullwhip effect and inventory variances. Previous similar studies have focused on investigating the impact of forecasting methods on bullwhip effect. However, little research has been carried out to explore the impact of forecasting methods for both bullwhip effect and inventory variances. Through simulation experiments, it has been found that depending on the structure of the demand process, the appropriate selection of forecasting technique can reduce, or even eliminate (i.e., “dewhip”) the bullwhip effect. However, in terms of inventory variances it has been shown that the inventory variances for the exponential smoothing are greater than the minimum mean squared error forecasting method and that gap increases as lead time increases. These findings will help companies to choose the appropriate forecasting technique depending on the nature of demand. These guidelines can help companies to reduce the bullwhip effect and inventory variances across supply chain.